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The 2019 Trade Deadline Live Blog

Once again, the NHL Trade Deadline is upon us and, as I do every year, I’m parking myself at my laptop to bring you up to date news on all things Oilers as we navigate our way through this year’s garage sale. Unfortunately for Oilers fans, the team is expected to sell off expiring assets again and it’s going to be interesting to see who gets moved, for what return, and how much salary Keith Gretzky will be able to clear for the next guy.

Despite the playoffs looking more like a pipedream than a reality at this point, I don’t see the Oilers being overly busy today apart from clearing out some expiring contracts. Yeah, it’s possible to see them pull off a bigger trade but I can’t see that happening with KG still rocking the Interim GM tag. That said, this team has shocked us all many times before so I feel like we should be preparing our bodies for something bonkers to happen just in case. All I’m saying is that there are some significant names being thrown around out there that could turn into something and you just never know. Regardless of what happens, I’ll be here all day long to cover it all, so keep refreshing the page and join in with your thoughts in the comments section — we’re all in this thing together.

THE TRADING POST

Looking through the contracts at NHLNumbers, the Oilers have a few pieces they can move depending on what Keith Gretzky and company are willing to do. One would hope that the UFAs will get moved for some any kind of return but you never really know what will happen on deadline day. Below, I’ve laid out the Oilers that need new contracts and took a swing at the likelihood of each guy getting moved. Do I know anything? No, don’t be ridiculous, but I’m going to take a swing anyway because what else are we supposed to do?

UFAs

Alex ChiassonAfter coming into camp on a PTO and eventually turning it into a one-year contract, Alex Chiasson went from being a healthy scratch over his first few games to playing through a heater that we haven’t seen in quite some time. For the first few months of the season, Chiasson was shooting at nearly a 30% clip and it gave a career high in goals despite still having a quarter of the season left. I’ve heard people mentioning Chiasson for a second round pick and if the Oilers can get that then they had better pull the trigger.

Alex Petrovic – Back in December, Alex Petrovic was picked up by Peter Chiarelli for a third-round pick in the 2019 draft and Chris Wideman (memba him?) as a means to bolster the blue line, and even though that didn’t really work out as planned, I still wonder if Keith Gretzky is going to be able to get anything back for him today. Petrovic could be useful for a team that would like to add depth for a playoff run, though I don’t have much of a guess as to how much he’d pull in. Considering Chiarelli gave up a 3rd and Wideman to get him, I’d be thrilled if Gretzky could get back anything close to that.

Kevin Gravel – For my money, Kevin Gravel has actually been one of the better third pairing options the Oilers have had all season and I’m always surprised when Hitchcock would play someone like Manning in favour of him. To me, he’s a solid 7th guy to have on your team and for that reason, I don’t think the Oilers should move on from him yet, but if he can get some kind of return then why not? Maybe a 4th? 3rd if we’re lucky?

Anthony Stolarz (maybe but maybe not) – Stolarz is in an interesting spot because he could end the season as either a restricted or unrestricted free agent depending on how much he plays over these last 20 games. Stolarz needs to play at least 30 minutes in 10 games or more by the end of the season or he’ll end up as a UFA on July 1st. So far, Hitchcock hasn’t given him any minutes yet so the safe money seems to be on him not getting enough playing time to maintain RFA status. Even so, I highly doubt the Oilers would trade him before even getting a single chance to see what he can do. Even if Stolarz makes it to UFA status, he’d probably be fairly easy to sign to a one-year deal.

Al Montoya – Montoya’s contract is expiring and getting an asset in return for him would be nice but…

RFAs

Jesse Puljujarvi – It’s been another crazy year for the former fourth overall pick as he continues to look for traction at the NHL level. While many agree that Puljujarvi should have probably spent the year last three years in the AHL, rumblings have come out that both the organization and player have had friction regarding what the best development plan should be. As a result, we’re seeing Puljujarvi’s name popping up in rumours with varying insiders saying that the Oilers are asking for a hefty price for the 20-year-old Finn. Will Puljujarvi be traded? I doubt it. There’s this whole surgery thing hanging over his head right now, his trade value is at it’s lowest, and I just can’t see the Oilers quitting on this kid quite yet. Not with an interim GM and head coach that won’t be here when the next season starts.

Jujhar Khaira – I can definitely see why other teams would want to acquire a player like Khaira, he’s big, strong and can chip in with a few points every now and then, but I don’t know why the Oilers would want to get rid of him. Yeah, Khaira is an RFA at the end of the season but I can’t see any scenario where he gets moved today.

UNDER CONTRACT

Zack Kassian – Right now, Zack Kassian is playing some of the best hockey that we’ve seen since the first round against San Jose in the 2017 playoffs. Since being bumped up in the roster, Kassian has used his speed and size well and the combination has translated into a dose of secondary scoring from the former first round pick that just wasn’t there in the first half of the season. I could definitely see a playoff team that needs some depth taking a look at Kass as a means to bolster their bottom six, but he still has another year left after this one which could be a problem for some potential suitors.

Matt Benning – I’m including Matt Benning on the list as an option because I thought he could be a guy that gets moved as a means to clear salary. I believe Benning can still be an asset and a decent third-pairing option, but I could also see Gretzky moving him if the right offer comes along.

Brandon Manning – Lol + Crying Emoji

Kris Russell – The shot blocking cowboy is the kind of player that teams love to pick up around the deadline, but I don’t know how many of them would be able to take on his $4 million contract with another two years remaining.

Milan Lucic – Won’t happen. Honestly, it won’t. Don’t even think about it. Actually, you know what, if Keith Gretzky can pull off a Lucic trade today I’ll start building his statue myself.

RUMOURS

Since I don’t really have an adult job, I’ll be spending most of my day cruising the Internet for news about the Oilers. If I find any rumblings or rumours while wading through the weeds, I will put them here. For those of you that have resisted the urge to join the devil that is social media, this will be the spot to watch to for any tidbits from the insiders, beat guys, or otherwise.

Ohhhhhh

THE UPDATES

So far, what we know is that the most important part of the trade deadline has already happened: Peter Chiarelli is no longer the General Manager. Since his removal, the Oilers have already been making moves as they pulled out the eraser to remove Ryan Spooner from the roster in exchange for Sam Gagner, while also sending Cam Talbot to Philly for cap space and Anthony Stolarz. What other moves are to come? Let’s find out together.

  • 8:00 am MT – Rise and Shine, Nation. It’s deadline day.
  • 8:31 am MT – Keven Hayes off to the Peg and that’s pretty much it so far.
  • 9:07 am MT – Nothing Oilers-related just yet. Looking at my second cup of coffee though, and am willing to trade very little to acquire it.
  • 10:07 am MT – Second coffee is happening right now and it is good.
  • 10:09 am MT – Getting crazy now and having an apple
  • 11:07 am MT – WHERE THE TRADES AT, KEITH!?
  • 11:30 am MT – 90 minutes until the final buzzer. Will the Oilers get anything done? In other news, I’ve moved on to lunch. I’ve got some delicious vegetable samosas that I’ve been excited to eat all day.
  • 12:00 pm MT – ONE HOUR LEFT! Surely, this last hour will be more entertaining. Has to be, right?
  • 12:05 pm MT – Oilers can’t lose trades if they don’t make any! Boom. Nailed it.
  • 12:30 pm MT – SOMEBODY DO SOMETHING! Or not… what do I care? You guys are here for the food takes anyway.
  • 12:46 pm MT – Looks like Stone is going to Vegas. I’m just happy Calgary didn’t get him.
  • 1:00 pm MT – There goes the buzzer and it doesn’t look like the Oilers are going to do anything. Oilers are in 26th place, have a few pending UFAs on their roster, and look like they’ll be doing absolutely nothing to clear out space today. Unbelievable.
  • 1:05 pm MT – Confirmed by multiple sources that the Oilers won’t be doing anything.


  • Dark Knight Returns

    Our First + for gritty

    That thing alone can make the Oiler experience so much more fun. We might even forgive we got McDavid and he is never winning a cup here

    • OilersRheal

      That’s why if the Oilers cannot provide a proper RW for Connor and if the team is not competitive and if I’m #97’s agent I demand a trade to a Stanley Cup winning caliber team by end 2019-2020.

        • OilersRheal

          Decent point. The Oilers have a nasty history of (IMO) mismanagement & questionable player development. Connor is a “generational” talent however who’s playing on his RW? Sure Puljujarvi hasn’t panned out just yet so if the Oilers are serious into being a contender and to commit to #97’s success Kassian is not the answer, neither was Rattie and just perhaps they need a “pivotal” top line RW.
          I don’t want to lose McD but what will the Oilers do? Doesn’t look like they’re making the playoffs so let’s just not have any expectations about anything anymore. This team sucks big time and will next year as well. #97 or not.

  • vetinari

    Say goodbye to Chiasson, Reider and Petrovic today… if we can unload Lucic without holding salary (the Holy Grail of trades), Manning and/or Russell, that is likely a great day. The new GM needs cap room for July 1st and somehow Chiarelli not only left us with an AHL roster but also cap hell at the same time. Thanks Chia.

  • OilersRheal

    The Oilers are jinxed. They’ll need to win most of their last 21 games to do the playoffs.
    Three forwards on the team (Mc D, Nuge & Leon) scored half the Oilers goals so far in season, that’s an issue.
    Give McDavid the proper RW he needs. Matt Stone is a RW so let’s go get him. Puljujarvi, Lucic and a conditional 2nd round pick. Sens will need to reach the cap floor next season at $83 M so that’s a win-win for both teams to swap Milan.

  • Rufio Barcoli

    It doesn’t matter who is on Connor’s wing. I don’t believe it is the issue for Connor and/or Oilers.
    The rest of the roster is where the issue lays.

    Granted they have had quite a few injuries on defense on the last two years, Oilers still need significant improvement to be competitive on nightly basis.

    I assume the bottom 6 next year will feature two farm players on a consist.
    Khaira is not going anywhere, solid prospect with potential.
    Puljujarvi will get resigned for cheap, and will breakout next season.
    I wouldn’t trade Kassian if I was the Oilers, still keep him for next year. Kassian is cheap and efficient for what he brings. He hasn’t looked that out of place in the Top 6 recently.
    Reider and Chiasson are as good as gone.
    Rattie will be packaged or let go.
    Brodziak should be traded today because I don’t see him getting better next year.

    The biggest thing Oilers need to do today and/or before free agency is trade Russell and Sekera, maybe Benning too if they don’t have to get fleeced.
    Trading the the defense along with Brodziak and Reider will free up a lot of space to work with.
    Subtract Gagner’s cap from it as well, and the Oilers have almost 15 million in space to work with.

    • OilersRheal

      Many here were Chia groupies for the longest time. Just go back in the ON archives’ comments.
      Doesn’t really matter who’s GM, who’s the HC, the number of top draft picks, etc. The Oilers had opportunities to shine but messed up badly. The Oilers are simply not competitive. Las Vegas made them look like crap with a crappy roster last year. The Oilers will suck again next year as this is their aim. As a life long fan since 1994, the only season I can remember that was positive was that Stanly Cup finals vs Carolina almost 13 years ago now…

  • Gary Chalmers

    Why get rid of Chiasson? He makes $650k, is not going to demand a huge raise, and gives you 10-15 goals a year. The minute you trade him, you will wish you had him. Try trading Russell or Kassian, for cap relief, but a free agent like Chiasson is ridiculous.

    • Rufio Barcoli

      I would keep Kassian over Chiasson.
      Chiasson had good fortune early in the year, his game has been on the decline for over a month now.
      He took he opportunity and ran with it but I don’t see him getting any better especially for the raise he would demand. Sell high.

      • Gary Chalmers

        Fair point, Chiasson has been cold for a while, and Kassian has heated up in that time, points wise not goals, but he has been playing better recently. They’re kind of the same player, I’d only move Kassian to eleviate cap space, and in the right place in the lineup Jujar Khaira can give you what Kassian, and Chiasson brings. Makes the Cagguila trade look even worse, cause you could have traded both Kassian and Chiasson and kept Jujar and Cagguila.

        • Oily Reign

          Chaisson and his agent will want Kassian $’s in the summer, but only brings half of what Kassian brings to the table. Keep Kassian. It may save the remaining Oilers some dental work. Kassian’s contract is not the problem.

  • Axe

    I hope they can continue to sell off and make more cap room for the new GM and if they can stock pile a couple of draft picks that would be nice.. Would be close to impossible to move someone like Lucic today but I have hope they can in the offseason Esp after his signing bonus in July..a team like Ottawa would be perfect after shedding so much cap space.. I doubt he would wanna go there but Ottawa could be part of a three team deal whereby they can retain some decent amount of his salary cap in exchange for a draft pick or prospect..

  • Axe

    Flipping back and forth between sportsnet and TSN.. Piere McGuire nearly made me spit my coffee with his insight on the oilers.. He said and I am paraphrasing here.. The one thing that gives him hope that the oilers can get out of this mess is Bob Nicholson because he is…. Wait for it… The king of the debrief.. This is the same Bob who lectured us on the plan last summer.. And yes that’s the same plan that left us with whoppers like manning and Spooner

  • slats-west

    Can we do something different than what we’ve always done. Eg non Core Player for 2nd round pick. How about trade for an actual player or prospect Eg requires us to do some actual homework and know another teams prospects. Just once.

    • Danger Pay

      If they want a salary cap then there has to be a buyout option that doesn’t affect a teams Cap. Something like the NFL has with guaranteed money, especially considering the youth movement going on, seems like players are being paid for future potential and not past performance.

      • Axe

        Strongly agree.. I posted a couple of weeks earlier we need something similar to NFL or NBA (forgetting about the diva players for a minute) whereby a buy out can happen more easily or the contract is not fully guaranteed.. Don’t mean to harp on the Lucic situation but imagine we could get out of his contract and possibly sekera if he continues being injured..

  • Spydyr

    So did the Oilers win a couple games and honestly think they had a shot at the playoffs?

    Other than that I cannot see a reason why they would not move their UFA’s for some draft picks.

    Not much the Oilers do makes sense.

        • Oily Reign

          This isn’t EA’s NHL 2019. Sometimes our need’s don’t match the market that is available. I would think they tried moving the spare parts. But… Oilers?

          • Spydyr

            NHL 19? How about you stick your patronizing comment up your butt. Teams would have been interested in Chiasson and every team is looking to pick up some defensive depth for the playoffs.

          • Spydyr

            Chiasson won a Cup last season that carries some weight. If the Oilers have a abundance of depth defenceman and I agree they have cornered the market on 7/8 defenceman teams would of have had a choice.

            I would not be surprised if the Oilers announce a contract for Chiasson in the near future. Keeping with Oiler tradition it will be an overpay in both term and dollars.

        • 99CupsofCoffey

          My point was this: what if these other teams went into negotiations as if it was Chiarelli and not Gretzky? And they ended in stalemates. I really hope that was the case. I’m tired of seeing bags of pucks come to Edmonton and actual players moving out.

  • OilersRheal

    Most people here are too emotional & also suffer from short term memory.
    Mark Stone went to Vegas for not too much while Connor McDavid has AHL level RW to skate along. This dysfunctional Oilers organization is a joke and Dallas Eakins, Kevin Lowe, Kelly Buchberger, Steve Tambellini, Cal Nichols, Pat Quinn, MacT or even the scouts are not the main culprits.
    I’m the generation who watched Todd Marchant, Fernando Pisani, Doug Weight, Tommy Salo, Curtis Joseph, Ladislav Smid, Ryan Smyth and Andrew Cogliano. They were losers back then too however they showed better character at far less pay.
    It seems to me that the Oilers “brain trust” is still waging that stupid Oilers fans will remain stupid and still support this AHL franchise despite the horrible track record.
    Mark Stone. A RW. Goes to Vegas.
    Connor McDavid. A generational super star. Plays with AHL level RW. Still. And for 2019-2020.
    #OilersSuck

  • OldOilerFan

    Nice. Winnipeg picked up Matt Hendricks. So a guy that we all loved and was great in the dressing room, was let go by our sad sack out of the playoffs team, and a Stanley cup contender thought enough of him to grab.
    It’s not all the stupid trades, it’s the guys we let go too that choke me.

  • Abagofpucks

    I wonder if KG will have a box of tissues handy while he holds his press conference, so he can tell us all how Petey screwed us so bad they couldn’t make a move at the deadline.

  • Clayton

    Oilers had a deal in place for Jesse and Milan to go to Minny for a draft pick. Oilers would hold $1.5M Cap hit. Minny would flip Milan to another team (Montreal??) and retain $1.5 Cap Hit and get a prospect for their work. Oilers backed out at the last minute as they wanted either a first rounder or A-Level prospect coming back, not the 3rd round pick Minny supposedly had in place. Anyone confirm this???

  • Hockeytalkguy

    While I’m not surprised nobody wanted anything from our scrap heap, maybe just maybe KG laid some foundation to move some contracts in the summer. We can dream, can’t we?

  • rektangle

    Man-oh-man is it tough watching teams like Buffalo, Columbus and Las Vegas get better while the Oilers are stuck in cap space purgatory. Montour would have been awesome to see in Edmonton silks, Stones makes Vegas that much better and Columbus is making a concerted effort to push for Lord Stanley before Bobrovsky peaces out.

    Oh I long for the days that Edmonton is makes these deals – I bet those fans feel great.